Palm Beach County

Florida Sheriff's Office Launches Probe Over Viral ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors' Video

The incident happened near Peanut Island and the boater involved, Adam Freedman, told NBC 6 Thursday that the game got his group out of paying about $500 in fines

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A video that went viral last week shows a group of boaters who claim they got out of trouble with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office by playing a game of rock, paper, scissors with a deputy.

The incident happened near Peanut Island and the boater involved, Adam Freedman, told NBC 6 Thursday that the game got his group out of paying about $500 in fines.

"He was like 'oh you don’t have this, you don’t have this.' By the end it was probably three tickets that accumulated to $500 dollars, maybe more," Freedman said.

Freedman said he and his friends were on the boat when they were pulled over by deputies on April 6. That's when Freedman said one of the deputies made them an offer.

"He kinda looks at me and he’s just like 'I’ll do you a favor, if you beat me in a game of rock, paper, scissors, shoot I’ll take off the tickets and I’ll let you guys go,'" Freedman said.

Cellphone video of the encounter was originally posted on TikTok with the caption "we got out of a felony with rock paper scissors," and it quickly went viral.

"In terms of actual felony, no, there was no felony,” said Freedman. "I think this was the one moment the officer was cutting people a break, and he had fun with us and you don’t see that every day."

But some who watched the video, which has racked up over 20 million views on TikTok, saw it another way.

At least one person who commented called the incident an example of "pretty privilege."

“It could’ve been cause of the girls, I would have to reach out to him for the comment what was going through his mind because I was astonished he even asked the question,” Freedman said.

Another commenter wrote "results may vary based on skin color."

“I was taken aback, my friends are all African American, one was on the boat," Freedman said. "I’ve never seen something like that where a cop was nice to us and just have fun with us, I hope he wasn’t fired for anything."

NBC 6 has learned that the incident is the subject of an active and ongoing internal affairs investigation by the sheriff’s office.

Sheriff's office officials confirmed their marine unit deputies were out on the water at the time, but wouldn’t comment on specifics about the video or the deputies, citing that ongoing investigation.

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